Freddie Freeman’s excellent start to the spring

Mark J. Rebilas-USA TODAY Sports
Dodgers star Freddie Freeman has come out of the gates red hot.

Coming off an individually great first season as a Dodger, Freddie Freeman has started his second spring training with the team on a tear.

He opened his spring by driving in the first Dodgers runs in their opener against Milwaukee. He scored Gavin Lux from first when he pulled a two-run homer and gave the Dodgers the lead.

After four hitless at-bats, Freeman got three chances in Thursday’s matchup with Arizona, going 2-3 with a homer and double. In total, he tallied three RBI before being taken out.

Lastly, Freeman added another hit and a walk in Friday’s game against the Angels.

The Dodgers will rely heavily on Freeman’s production this season. After all, the 2020 National League MVP has consistently been one of the best hitters in baseball. Following an offseason where the Dodgers lost multiple big offensive names, like Trea Turner and Justin Turner, he will have to continue playing well for the team to find success.

In his first year as a Dodger, Freeman hit .325 with 21 home runs and a .918 OPS. Hitting behind Mookie Betts and periodically Trea Turner as well, he drove in an even 100 runs. He led the majors in hits with 199 and tied for tops in the National League in runs with Betts. Rounding out his accomplishments were an All-Star selection and fourth place finish in MVP voting as he led the Dodgers to a franchise-record 111 wins.

If anything lacked in his fantastic 2022 campaign, it was his power production dipping at times. Freeman’s ISO (isolated power) of .186 was his lowest clip since 2013. From August to the end of the season, only 18 of Freeman’s 71 hits went for extra bases. However, he still hit .326 for a 148 wRC+ during that stretch, so Freeman is an extremely valuable hitter regardless of whether the ball leaves the yard. If this first week of spring training is an indication of his typical power returning, Freeman could be an even more dangerous hitter in 2023.

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